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21 OCTOBER 2022
IGLTA
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LGBTQ+ FESTIVALS CALENDAR
Attending an LGBTQ+ festival or event is a great way to celebrate as a community even outside of Pride season. Whether it's music, art, food, sports or dance as the theme, our voice and presence as an LGBTQ+ community is stronger when we come together. To spotlight this, we compiled a global calendar of festivals and events around the world that are LGBTQ+ but are not specifically pride events. You'll find different themes ranging from music, art, food, sports, dance, advocacy, comedy and more. While each event may be different, the common thread that binds all these together events is the celebration within our queer community.
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JOIN US IN SPIRIT DAY
On 20 October, IGLTA turned purple for Spirit Day to stand strongly with LGBTQ+ youth and against bullying. Launched by Canadian teenager Brittany McMillan in 2010, Spirit Day was initially created in response to a rash of bullying-related suicides of LGBTQ+ school students, including Tyler Clementi. In a 2021 survey by the Trevor Project, more than half of LGBTQ+ middle and high school students reported being bullied either in person or electronically in the previous year. Together let’s help eradicate the verbal and physical harassment experienced by LGBTQ+ students around the world.
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Image credit: Getty Images
ROMANTIC PUERTO VALLARTA — BEYOND THE ZONA ROMÁNTICA
With steamy beach days and sizzling nightlife dominating the social scene, it's no wonder that a vibrant LGBTQ+ village has been thriving in Puerto Vallarta, the relaxed city sheltered by Banderas Bay on Mexico's central Pacific coastline, for decades.  While the Zona Romántica isn't exclusively a gayborhood, equally brimming with expats of all sorts (but especially Canadian), snazzy shops, buzzy bars, and cozy cafés, the perennially trendy neighborhood is the de facto center of LGBTQ+ life in the city and you'll have no problem finding your people, or whatever else you're looking for, while you're here. Still, make an effort to step outside your comfort Zona and explore a different side of romance next time you escape to Puerto Vallarta. Here's how to treat yourself and/or your partner to a weekend of well-living in romantic Puerto Vallarta outside the Zona Romántica. 
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Image credit: Two Bad Tourists
LGBTQ+ TRAVEL GUIDE TO SOUTH AFRICA
Unlike the rest of the African continent, South Africa is worlds apart when it comes to being classed as an LGBTQ+ welcoming destination. In fact, LGBTQ+ people hold rights equal to non-LGBTQ+ people. South Africa was the first country in the world to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation in its constitution, back in 1996. Ten years later, in November 2006, South Africa became the fifth country globally to legalise same-sex marriage; the first and to-date, only, country in the entirety of Africa. The larger cities such as Cape Town and Johannesburg offer a full-scale LGBTQ+ scene, including their own annual Prides. However even some of the smaller cities and towns such as Port Elizabeth, and Stellenbosch in the Western Cape now have bars that have become known as the local LGBTQ+ hangout.
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